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11:01 p.m. - It's been a long time since I parachuted in to watch an election night event at the headquarters of a famous politician under a cloud.
But it all came back to me in Harlem where New York Rep. Charlie Rangel was asking voters to send him on to compete for a 21st term in the Congress as a Democrat even though he was facing 13 ethics charges back in Washington.
A handful of big names in the Democratic establishment turned out including Gov. David Patterson and former NY mayor David Dinkins. What ethics charges? They talked about all Rangel has done for New York.
Some declared victory for Rangel before the votes were in. Bold –given the nasty anti-incumbent mood in the country?
Perhaps but Rangel has gotten a lot of help. Bill Clinton and Mayor Bloomberg did robocalls for him. And Rangel raised a lot of money. And he also faced a crowded field all competing each other for "oxygen" against his famous name.
Out on the street I asked a man about Rangel and his "issues". He summed it up by saying the people who founded this country stole it from the Indians. And if Rangel made a few mistakes so what?
Where have I heard that before?